Learn why understanding your target audience is the secret sauce.
By: Jeanette Stevens
Here is the scenario: you are churning out blog after blog, filling your site with thoughts and information which you think is valuable to your audience. You spend time pouring over the grammar, checking again and again for errors. You finally approve the content that you have produced then click to post.
You wait….and wait…. then wait some more, before you realize that you are not really getting the kind of engagement you expected you would from your blog. Obviously, this is frustrating because you are expending the time and the energy to produce a blog with valuable information to you at least, Right?
Your blog needs to specifically address the needs and wants of your target audience – Period. That is the simple reality, what most successful blogs have in common is that the content they are producing directly speaks to their target audience, whether it is a working mom who is looking for quick family meal ideas, a person who loves RVing or a brand new business owner, will all consume the content that is relevant to them.
So, what does that mean for your blog?
To start you need to know who your audience is, include yourself if you are part of this audience. Think the way they think and start by creating an outline.
Here is a simple 3 step process which you can use today to start outlining content for blogs which will get attention.
Step 1: You Are Not Targeting Your Audiences Problem
This Step is by far the most important. If you do not truly know who your target market is, where they come from, what keeps them up at night – then how will you connect with them? You must think about the current problems they are facing to determine what they need. Do some market research, meet them on platforms where they spend the most time, look at and join in on the conversations they are having. Also once complete, your buyer persona, will have information which you can use for content, not just for your blog, but for your social media platforms as well.
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Take the information you have learned from your readers and create content which has an emphasis on the problems or concerns they are facing. Even if the topic is more of an interest piece than informational you still need to have a level of understanding of why your audience would even be interested in the topic. Support your findings with facts, and really dig into the problem, outline it and then promise that by the end of the blog you will have delineated a solution.
Step 2: There Is No Value Or Benefit
Even if you explain a problem, give words of encouragement or write about interesting topics, if you cannot provide value or benefit you will find people will lose interest and drop off your content without engaging with it. Taking this idea into context, you must therefore list the problems your audience is facing in order to properly dissect and resolve
- Maybe they are having trouble driving traffic to their website, regardless of the money they have spent, groups they belong to or hours spent on social media.
- The issue could be with increasing engagement and interest to a blog
- Or possibly the stress of juggling being a solopreneur and mom
Once you have listed the pain points of your audience begin to explain WHY they are experiencing these problems. Start with outlining the steps they can take NOW to solve the problems that they are having.
Borrow instances from your own life or the life of someone that you know who has had the same trouble. Go into detail explaining why they are having this problem, promise to solve the issue with valuable insight, trust me your readers will continue to read to get whatever solution you are promising. Make sure to explain to your readers why it will benefit them to get the steps you have outlined right. Then explain further that the value is in the benefit they will receive from the information you have given them.
Whoa Wait a Minute! “the value is in the benefit they will receive from the information you have given them”?
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Yes! And here is why: You have fully addressed the problems and took it step further by really driving home WHY your audience is running into these obstacles.
Take it a step further and include a free checklist or step by step reference guide your readers can instantly download for further benefit and value.
Explain that the checklist or reference guide which you have created for them will provide even more ammunition which they can be used to solve the problems and issues they are having.
Step 3. You Need To Solve For X
After you have spent time going over the problems that your readers are experiencing you can then wrap up by solving for X which symbolizes the roadblock. You have pulled out all the stops to dissect why your readers issues are cropping up and now in this step you can spend the rest of time on solutions and success stories.
Talk about how you your friend (or any person you chose to discuss) was able to resolve the issues that they had, really go into what the light bulb moment was, what they read or did to begin to turn the tides in their favor.
People will want to know how your product, service, course etc. will solve for x.
TIP: When you are just starting out or trying to build an e-mail list my suggestion would be to ALWAYS include a checklist, e-book, or reference guide which will serve as a free and immediate solution for your readers.
Ask for their e-mail and first name if you like in exchange for this information. What this will do for you besides helping you to build a robust list is earn the trust and loyalty of your readers and audience who will eagerly consume your very valuable and insightful content.